Students in all disciplines can do research on topics that interest them. In the past, honors students have done projects on a diverse range of topics including the 1960s philosopher, Alan Watts, Icelandic literature, digital archaeology, and the theater of the absurd.
Completing independent research at the undergraduate level can give students a great deal of latitude in choosing the academic interests that they will pursue, as well as allowing them to explore their interests in greater depth than courses can usually offer. Undertaking research can also give students an advantage when applying to graduate or professional programs.
The Honors Contract Course allows an honors student to enroll in a 3000 or 4000-level non-honors course, complete additional work that represents a qualitative enhancement to the existing course, and have the completed course with contracted work count for honors credit. Before enrolling in an honors contract course, students should have completed at least two honors courses or be currently enrolled in their second honors course. Approval of course contracts is at the discretion of Diann McCabe, the Director of Academic Development. To download the Honors Contract Application, visit our Downloadable Forms page.
Honors Independent Study (HON 4391) is offered every semester. This course allows students to study selected materials under the direct supervision of a professor for honors credit. The course meeting days, times, and substitutions are arranged by the professor and honors student.
To enroll in an independent study course, a student must have completed two regular honors courses prior to enrolling in HON 4391. Turn in the signed and completed HON 4391 form to Professor Diann McCabe. To download the HON 4391 Course Agreement, visit our Downloadable Forms page.
The Honors Thesis is a course that students undertake under the supervision of a professor and possibly, a second reader, on a subject of their choosing. This course culminates in a project of significant size, and is required to graduate in the Honors College, and to fulfill the requirements of the Honors Studies Minor. Before registering for HON 4390B, a student must have the thesis proposal approved by the thesis supervisor, and meet with the Dean of the Honors College, Dr. Galloway, to receive final approval to enroll in the course. Find more details on the Thesis Information page.
Publishing research can help prepare students for graduate school, and/or for an academic profession, or just help them improve their writing. Professors can often help students get started in the publication process by suggesting journals or other avenues for them to publish in, and by helping them in the revision process. Here are links to journals and to the Undergraduate Research Program's lists of journals:
On-Campus Journals and Other Journals (Undergraduate Research's list)
Each spring semester, the Office of the Associate Vice President for Research and the Honors College sponsor an Undergraduate Research Conference. The event is held to provide an opportunity for undergraduate students across the different colleges and disciplines to share their endeavors with the academic and University communities.
Honors theses, research (in any phase of completion), creative works, and course projects are all welcome for submission to the Conference. In the spirit of academic curiosity and discovery, the major aim of the event is to showcase and celebrate the work of Texas State's undergraduate students.
The Conference also strives to serve as a leadership development experience for students as they move forward on their academic journeys and in their career paths. Presentation, interpersonal communication, and public speaking skills are a few benefits students gain from participating in the Conference. For more information, visit the URC page.
Note: If a student wishes to present research in the fall semester, he or she should look into presenting at the Thesis Forum.
The Honors College holds a Thesis Forum each Fall semester to provide a venue for students to present their honors theses to the academic and University communities. Along with providing leadership development for students in presentation skills, the Thesis Forum is seen as a celebration of the culmination of students' self-driven academic projects. Open to all, the Forum acknowledges the academic achievement of the participants and seeks to inspire the spirit of academic curiosity in students, staff, and members of the community. For more information, visit the Thesis Forum page.
Note: In the spring semester, the Honors College holds an Undergraduate Research Conference, which is similar to the Thesis Forum. If you wish to present research in the spring semester, please consider presenting at the Undergraduate Research Conference.
The National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) and Great Plains Honors Council (GPHC) offer professional conferences every spring and fall. Students and faculty can attend these conferences to make presentations and attend sessions about the activities, courses, and events happening in other Honors programs across the country.
For information on other conferences, visit this Undergraduate Research page.